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DWP promise at Mono Lake unkept

June 22nd, 2013 by Arya, Communications Director

A May 13, 2013 report to the State Water Board revealed that the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (DWP) failed to keep its promise to monitor the health of Mono Lake. DWP unilaterally took over operations of the lake monitoring program in August 2012, displacing the independent expert scientists who had run the program for 30 years. Since then a litany of issues has ensued. As a result, critical data—such as the salinity of Mono Lake—are not being collected, and key portions of the data that are being gathered are not usable. These failures are violations of the rules set in 1998 by the State Water Board.

Due to the seriousness of this situation, the Mono Lake Committee submitted this letter to the State Water Board detailing the failures and requesting immediate action to remedy the situation before another year of data is lost.

“It’s impossible to restore Mono Lake without knowing its current state of health,” said Mono Lake Committee Executive Director Geoff McQuilkin. “Unfortunately this is a case where DWP is not keeping its promises. DWP is allowed to divert and export 16,000 acre feet of water per year—an urban supply worth more than $10 million annually. The Mono Lake limnology monitoring program is a reasonable and affordable condition of the water license that allows those exports. DWP simply needs to follow the rules.”

The Mono Lake Committee is watching DWP’s actions closely in order to protect and restore Mono Lake, and is also pursuing DWP’s streamflow violations as reported in the same report. We will post progress on this issue here on The Mono-logue.

The Mono Lake Committee's June 14 letter to the State Water Board. Click on the image to see the full letter.


7 Responses to “DWP promise at Mono Lake unkept”

  1. avatar David Carle Says:

    Thanks for taking this action. There are other issues of concern about the seemingly stalled lake elevation recovery in light of DWP’s permitted diversions and about the diminished presence of knowledgeable state and federal field rangers, year around, that I hope you will also aggressively pursue as the 20 year anniversary of the Mono Lake decision is reached.The need for the on-going presence of the Mono Lake Committee so many years after apparent “victory” in saving the lake was never more apparent.

  2. avatar Larry Says:

    With 2014 just around he corner it is clear that DWP is still their arrogant selves.
    It is time to prepare for an all out legal battle. Let the fundraising begin for the legal fees that may be needed.
    Geoff — I am ready to sign up for whatever I can do to help.

  3. avatar Arya Says:

    Hey Dave — We hear you! Ongoing vigilance — both on the ground and in legal and political arenas is crucial to protecting and restoring Mono Lake. The victories for Mono Lake have never been more important, nor the presence of 16,000 Mono Lake Committee members who are dedicated to making sure DWP stays the course. Thank you for the support — we’re all in this together. — Arya

  4. avatar Arya, Communications Director Says:

    Hey Larry — Unfortunately, you’re right about the legal fees. Fortunately, the network of Mono Lake supporters (in the legal arena and many others) is alive and strong … including you! Many thanks, and we’ll be in touch. — Arya

  5. avatar Blog round-up: Bloggers on Delta Plan lawsuits, the BDCP, and regional issues, plus data visualizations, Aquapedia, a super cool party trick, and more! » MAVEN'S NOTEBOOK | MAVEN'S NOTEBOOK Says:

    […] DWP is not keeping promises at Mono Lake, says the Mono Lake Committee on their blog:  “A May 13, 2013 report to the State Water Board revealed that the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (DWP) failed to keep its promise to monitor the health of Mono Lake. DWP unilaterally took over operations of the lake monitoring program in August 2012, displacing the independent expert scientists who had run the program for 30 years. Since then a litany of issues has ensued. As a result, critical data—such as the salinity of Mono Lake—are not being collected, and key portions of the data that are being gathered are not usable. These failures are violations of the rules set in 1998 by the State Water Board. … “  More from the Mono-Logue here:  DWP promise at Mono Lake unkept […]

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    […] You can read the entire post HERE. […]

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    […] are specified and thus initiate a new phase of stream monitoring. Mono Lake limnology monitoring, a source of dispute over the past year, is assigned to the expert scientists who have run the program for […]